Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Things have been pretty hectic the last few weeks. Since we have been a slave to the fertility schedule for the last 10 months and have not been able to take many trips, we immediately began forming plans. After we had our WTF appointment, we had a better idea of what our holidays would look like. Then Greg looked at his work schedule to see what would fit. We worked through many different scenarios, and settled on one that has us going from one end of the country to the other over the next several weeks. We will start our travels in Hawaii followed by trips to both respective families on the west coast and east coast. Plus, we will also get some time around the house to work on some projects. I am super excited about seeing family and friends, but also getting some rest and relaxation at the beach. Warm weather and the holidays seem like a weird combination, but I can work though that easily.

Somehow, I have been able to get all of the holiday decorating, gift buying, present wrapping and mailing and card sending done in a matter of about a week. I have also worked on a huge organization project around the house that I completed tonight, and gotten us ready for our 3 trips. I have managed to get more done in the last week than I have all year. It feels good to be busy and it is making things go faster. Soon it will be 2010! I am ready for 2009 to be in the past.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Frozen Versus Fresh

After a series of clunkers throughout high school and college, I bought my first new car shortly after moving to Seattle. I felt settled in my first real job, and thought it was time to make a big purchase. I traded in the feeling hope that the car would crank and the hassle of public transportation, for a 1999 Saturn SL1. The day I made the last payment, I celebrated my accomplishment with friends. It was not the prettiest car, or the fanciest car, but it got me where I needed to go when I needed to get there and I loved it. After about 9 years of car ownership, I began to brag about what a good practical car I had. Then it happened. . I started having problems with it. It started one spring morning on my way to work. My trusted car almost conked out on me during rush hour traffic on a major highway. I luckily made it off an exit and to a gas station. At this point Greg and I were married and I had a better job with more money, so we decided it was time for a new one. I remember the day we traded it in for a prettier, fancier and more sensible car the salesman looked at me and said, “I am sure you are really excited to get rid of this thing.” I was not and I wanted to punch him when he said that to me. Don’t get me wrong, I love the butt warmers in my current car, but I loved my Saturn and the achievement, security and independence it represented.

I want to say out loud that I am proud of how my body has braved the last 10 months. After almost 3 weeks being hormone free, I am feeling pretty good. I amazed at how much energy I have and how good I feel. I am hoping that I am not jinxing my body like I did my car when I bragged about how good it has been to me because I am going to need it to help me through for a bit longer.

Greg and I have spent some time discussing frozen (FET Frozen Embryo Transfer) versus fresh. Two of our embryos made it freeze on the 6th day. We asked Dr. NiceGuy his opinion on frozen vs. fresh, hoping that he would just tell us what to do. We told him our dilemma and he understood and he said he would support us either way, but ultimately the decision was ours.

This is the dilemma: I am 36, and if best case scenario the frozen cycle ends in a singleton pregnancy, I will be pushing 38 trying to have a second child. Fertility starts to take another nose dive around then. I know I am getting ahead of myself, but I have always imagined at least two children. Maybe because I am the second child, I feel pretty strongly about it. We have very good reasons for wanting two. The main one being that Greg is an only child, and there will be no other children this child’s age on his side of the family. Secondly, I do have two wonderful nephews that are 6 and 4, but they live 3,000 miles away. We will be older parents, and will not be around forever. We want to make sure that this child has a support system. Lastly, I cannot imagine what it would be like to not have a sibling. I lean on Ninny (my sister) so much and I cannot imagine what it would be like to not have her support. She gets me like no one else does because we literally came from the same place. We were hoping that the frozen would be for a sibling. I know we are jumping ahead of ourselves and should concentrate on one at a time, but I feel strongly about having two children.

Ultimately, we decided to move forward with a FET in late January early February. We came to this conclusion for many reasons. First, who knows how the FET will turn out. We could be heading for another fresh anyway. Secondly, my body needs a break. Now, that I have come out of my hormone cloud I truly realize what I have put myself through. While I will still have to do Lupron, estrogen patches and PIO, we will not be stimulating my ovaries and doing a minor surgical procedure. I think it will be much easier on me, and hopefully making a better environment. Thirdly, we have a great group of friends with kids that they will be close in age to our child. I know Ninny and I will work hard to make sure that the cousins not only know each other, but they are there for each other. Who knows what technology will be like in the future for them to be able to communicate regularly and be a support system from long distance. I know e-mail, FB, skype and texting have made it so easy for me to be away from my family, imagine what will be possible for them. Also, Greg and I are healthy and this will give us even more incentive to stay that way. Lastly, who knows what will happen in the future. Maybe the next one will not be as hard as I think or maybe we will adopt the second. I am pushing this too hard to fit in a pretty little box. I need to back off, and let things happen as they should. As I have learned the hard way I cannot control this and the more I try the more pressure I am putting on myself. That cannot be helping things. So basically, the decision is keep moving forward, but to let things happen as they will.

In the meantime, I am going to work on the one thing I can control. I am going to be as good as I can to my body, so that it will be good to me and hopefully a visitor in the near future.

Monday, December 7, 2009


Celebration!!!! I love potty humor!! Every time anyone mentions the word fart, I immediately transform until an 8 year old boy laughing hysterically. Besides an occasional smell that has gone too far or too often, there is nothing funnier in my book. It goes behind flatulence. I love watching Dr. Oz and Oprah discussing appropriate poop. It is just funny they are on TV talking about s*&. I religiously check each BM to make sure it is the size and consistency (by look only!) that it should be. If it is not, I immediately report it first thing to my acupuncturist to help things along. I also report my progress on the BM front to Greg and friends whenever I see them. It always comes up in some form or fashion. Most people know that at a certain time every morning, I am in the bathroom like clockwork and if not then something is wrong. Surprisingly, I do still have friends. Evidently, pretty good ones since they put up and go along with my constant updates on how things are progressing. Luckily, Greg finds this trait endearing.

When I started the IVF cycle, I thought the worst part was going to be the stims, the shots, the constant juggling of schedules and the minor surgery. However, that was not the worst part. The worst part as imagined was that it came out with a BFN! My parting gift for receiving a BFN was the worst period of my life including cramps that required leftover vicodin and SEVERE uncomfortable constipation. That is right I have been living off of fiber rich foods and Fiber One bars for two weeks. Luckily, Costco sells Fiber One bars in bulk. After things got moving a long for a while with some help, I decided to back off and let things take their course. This would be why I am celebrating today. That’s right; I had my first bowel movement without help in two weeks!!! WooHooo!!!! It is the little things in life that get me by. I apologize for the TMI, but had to brag! I warned you!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

WTF? Still Don't Have a Clue.

Yesterday we met with Dr. NiceGuy for our WTF appointment. I have learned many things about the fertility clinic since becoming a patient there 10 months ago. Examples would be the following: blood drawn before 12 gets results back the same day, the front desk receptionist likes grande mocha in the morning, the majority of the medical assistants are clueless and I just have to keep pressing them to get what I want and the lab and the clinic bill separately. However, the most important thing I have learned is that IVF means you get face time with the doctor, and when IVF does not work you get to spend an hour and half with the doctor telling you how sorry he is. I felt like we were pushing him out the door instead of the reverse.

Overall, the appointment went well. His basic thought was that I stimmed well, the retrieval went well, the fertilization went well and the transfer went well. He thought my eggs looked good, uterine lining looked good and Greg’s sperm was good. (then WTF?) The only slightly abnormal thing was that from Day 3 to Day 5 typically about 50% of the embryos survive. We had 36% of our embryos survive. Although this was lower than expected, he felt that the 4 embryos we had looked very good. He felt that the thing we learned from this is that we can do this. He felt like it is a matter of time for us and we should try again.

In many ways it feels good to hear that there is no reason why this cannot work, if we just keep trying. Hopefully the numbers will fall in our favor at some point. In other ways, we wish we knew what we were up against, so that we could face our challenges and make decisions accordingly. Then we remember that this way there is hope that with time, patience and a crapload of money this will work at some point.

So, what is next? Since it has been 10 months since I had my HsG, he wants to do a Saline Infusion Sonogram to check my uterus out again. We have to decide if we want to do another fresh or frozen cycle. (I will write more on this later.) There are pros and cons for both. Depending on what we decide I may go on BCPs (birth control pills) with my next period or wait until my January cycle to continue. Regardless, I am excited to have a break from medicine regimes, appointment scheduling, ovulation tracking and reproductive researching. I am hoping to actually write a few blog posts that do not involve what is going on in lower half of my body. I am excited to have a few drinks, eat some raw fish, enjoy the holidays and look forward to a new year!